The growth in e-Commerce has resulted in a tremendous increase in the volume of small parcels that are transported by postal and express courier services. This shift in trade patterns increases the risk of introduction and spread of pests into new territories.

The increasing popularity of e-Commerce is also impacting the traditional way of doing business. There is a shift from high-value, bulk consignments shipped business to business (B2B) towards more smaller business to consumer (B2C) and consumer to consumer (C2C) transactions. This represents a significant change in the role of consumers, since they are now also importers - importers that may be unaware of the phytosanitary requirements associated with the goods they are purchasing on-line.

IPPC Secretariat work plan for cross-border e-Commerce (2019-2022)

In November 2019, the Implementation and Capacity Development Committee (IC) approved the IPPC Secretariat work plan, which includes the following key elements:

  1. Establishing an informal network of e-Commerce experts to enhance collaboration among the participants, facilitate the exchange of information about e-Commerce initiatives that are already underway and identify opportunities for addressing the phytosanitary risks associated with cross-border e-Commerce.
  2. Strengthening collaboration between the IPPC Secretariat and the WCO and other key international organizations.
  3. Gathering existing information and technical resources relevant to the IPPC community on the subject of e-Commerce and making these resources available on the IPPC website.
  4. Developing a new IPPC Guide on e-Commerce (2017-039).

Working in Partnership

World Customs Organization (WCO):

The World Customs Organization (WCO) is the international intergovernmental organization that deals with the customs procedures that govern trade between countries.

In March 2019, the Secretariats of the IPPC and the WCO signed a joint work plan. This joint work plan addresses several major areas for bilateral cooperation, including cross-border e-commerce.

The WCO e-commerce package provides guidance to national customs administrations on establishing or enhancing their legislative, policy and operational framework for managing cross-border e-commerce.

Relevant ISPMs

A number of ISPMs are relevant to all trade, including e-commerce trade, such as:

This web page was last updated on 2020-07-09. For further information please contact [email protected].

Title Files Publication date
IPPC Secretariat work plan for cross-border e-Commerce (2019-2022) En 07 Jan 2020
CPM-12 (2017) Special Topics Session: e-Commerce, Presentations Link 27 Apr 2017
CPM Recommendation on: Internet trade (e-Commerce) in plants and other regulated articles (R-05) Link 24 Aug 2017
CPM-12 (2017) Special Topics Session: e-Commerce Link 17 Feb 2017

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